NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Friday suspended a Punjab and Haryana High Court order, which directed registration of an FIR and also setting up of a special investigation team (SIT) of Punjab Police to probe into the alleged abduction of a dentist by Chandigarh police to stop him from appearing in a court.
Additional Solicitor General K M Nataraj, appearing for the Union Territory of Chandigarh, contended before a bench of Justices A S Bopanna and Hima Kohli as to how could the high court, while hearing an anticipatory bail application, order for an FIR against police officials.
He claimed that the high court also ordered for a probe by a SIT of Punjab Police, which is "totally without any jurisdiction".
Representing Mohit Dhawan, advocate Prashant Bhushan, on the contrary, claimed that this is one of the worst cases of police excesses he has seen.
The high court had passed the order on Dhawan's plea.
Bhushan, for his part, submitted his client, a Chandigarh-based dentist, had filed a suit for recovering some dues owed to him by a woman from Nairobi for her treatment and as a result, he was implicated in a series of complaints about improper treatment.
Bhushan further submitted that the high court's order showed the police filed contradictory affidavits.
On the plea, the bench sought a response from Dhawan, saying that the case needs to be considered at length, while staying the high court order.
It also directed Chandigarh police to preserve the records, including CCTV footage, and call details, pertaining to the case. The top court fixed the matter for further hearing after five weeks.
"The matter shall not be precipitated pursuant to the directions of the High Court through the impugned order. Further the petitioner is directed to retain and preserve the call details, CCTV footage and all electronic records existing as on today. List the matter after five week," the bench said in its order.
During the hearing, Bhushan submitted that three separate complaints were filed against his client and in two of them he managed to get anticipatory bail but in the third, he was asked to be present before a magistrate.
However, on the day of the hearing, a team of Chandigarh crime branch police abducted Dhawan, while another team marked their appearance in court, Bhushan alleged.
Earlier this week, the court had agreed to take up the plea of Chandigarh police against the High court's order of March 3 directing the Punjab DGP to constitute the SIT within a week to probe the matter on a plea by Dhawan.
According to the Chandigarh administration, a Nairobi national accused Dhawan of cheating her when she came to India during 2017-18 to get dental implants from his clinic.
When Dhawan went to mark his presence before a magistrate’s court, the Chandigarh police team allegedly abducted him. However, the police have claimed that he was arrested in connection with another case.